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Doorbell camera captures suspects wanted for spray painting swastikas and hateful messages on homes in Nashville

Jewish teens share experiences with antisemitism
Jewish teens share their experiences with antisemitism 03:41

Police in Nashville are searching for two suspects who allegedly spray-painted hate symbols on homes in the city's Sylvan Park neighborhood. Surveillance video shows the suspects painting swastikas on a home at around 1:28 a.m. on Monday, said in a statement.

Five other homes were also vandalized with swastikas and hate messages, according to the statement. The suspects, who had their faces covered, appear to be two white males. 

At one of the targeted homes, one of the suspects spray-painted a Ring camera. The camera was still able to record the suspect tearing down a flag the family had on their porch. 

The police department shared the Ring video on Twitter and asked anyone who may know the suspects to call 615-742-7463.

There will be an increased police presence in Sylvan Park and at Jewish institutions in the city, the police department said. The investigation is being handled by the specialized investigations division. 

There are several synagogues, as well as the Jewish Middle School of Nashville, within about a mile of the neighborhood. According to a 2015 survey by Brandeis University's Steinhardt Social Research Center, there are about 11,000 Jewish people living in Nashville, a city of about 700,000. 

Nashville Mayor John Cooper condemned the acts, saying the city "stands united against the hate and bigotry these disgusting acts represent."

"Grateful to Chief Drake & his team for their ongoing work to track down those responsible and hold them accountable. We will not tolerate antisemitism or discrimination of any kind in our city," the mayor tweeted.

Antisemitic incidents in the U.S. increased 34% year over year in 2021, reaching an all-time high of 2,717 total incidents, according to the Anti-Defamation League. These incidents include assault, harassment and vandalism reported to the organization.

Attacks on Jewish institutions, like Jewish community centers and synagogues, were up by 61%. Incidents at colleges were up 21% while incidents at elementary schools were up a whopping 106%. Assaults on people were up a whopping 167% and harassment was up 43%, while antisemitic vandalism rose 14%. 

The incidents increased during rising conflicts between Israel and Hamas, ADL says. 

In Maryland last November, a popular walking trail was vandalized with antisemitic graffiti, including a swastika. Similar graffiti was found on the trail about four months prior, and Meredith Weisel, local regional director for the ADL, said it was "not anything new."

"These extremist views have become part of everyday life. It has been normalized now," Weisel told CBS Baltimore. "It may start with the Jewish community, but it never ends with the Jewish community."

Racist and antisemitic graffiti was also spray painted on homes in the Weston Hills community of Broward County, Florida, last October, according to CBS Miami.

In New York City, a string of antisemitic attacks in Brooklyn left the community on high alert last May, CBS New York reports.

Last week, Stanford University said police were investigating an antisemitic drawing in a dormitory as a hate crime, according to CBS News Bay Area. 

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